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The main fields of activity are related to dielectric material
characterization and diagnosis of electrical power systems through partial
discharge (PD) measurements.
LIMAT has carried out a tight collaboration with the major international
labs and companies involved in the field of electrical insulation
Italian universities: Trieste,
Roma, Cassino, Napoli, Genova, Palermo, Padova.
Foreign universities: Toulouse (France),
Bangor, Leicester, Surrey (UK), Delft (The Netherlands), Potsdam (Germany),
Public and private companies and research
centers: Hydro-Quebec, Ontario-Hydro, CNR (Canada); Laborelec (Belgium), CESI, GRTN, Enel,
TERNA, Pirelli, Telecom Italia, Ansaldo, ASI-Robicon, FIAR (Italy); Borealis (Sweden); EDF, Alstom,
Nexans (France); Dow Chemicals, EPRI (USA).
The main reserch topics are:
aging investigation and life modelling of polymeric insulating materials
power cables) by means of short and long term electric, thermal and
mechanical tests. The original methodologies employed, together with new
test systems developed, e.g. for space charge measurements, allow test
optimization providing the maximum data available in the shortest time.
Quality control and on-line diagnostics on the main apparatus of
electrical power systems (e.g., transformers, generators, electric motors,
cables and accessories, etc.) by means of partial discharge measurements
employing artificial intelligence techniques for evaluation of insulation
condition (in cooperation with
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Characterization of new nano-structurated insulating
and semiconductive materials which
allow to improve electrical, thermal and mechanical performance of
electrical insulation systems. Click for details
Investigation of properties of new ferroelectric
cellular polymers with high
piezoelectricity for application in electronic sensors and transducers by
means of conductivity, space charge and partial discharge measurements.
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Diagnostics of inverter-supplied induction motors, called ASD (Adjustable
Speed Drive) by Partial Discharge analysis on winding insulation of motor
stator. The research includes the development of UHF sensor for partial
discharge, commutation noise filtering and partial discharges
characterization for both on-line and off-line motor configurations. Click for details
mechanical and electrical properties of HT superconductors for application
on power cables. Click for details
Main European Research
1) HVDC (“Potential
benefits of HVDC links in the European power electrical system and
improved DC insulation requirements”): belonging to the5th Framewotk
Programme, has been started on 01/01/2003. This project deals with HVDC
cables (improved environmental compatibility). Two objectives: 1) to
evaluate potential benefits of HVDC systems; 2) to study, in particular,
HVDC cables (insulation modelling, aging and diagnstics). Main partners:
GRTN, CESI, Pirelli, Borealis, Univ. Bologna-LIMAT, Univ. Leicester, Univ.
Tolosa, Univ. Delft, Univ. Surrey.
2) DURASMART (“DURAble
cellular polymer films with giant electromechanical response for SMART
transducer applications”): belonging to the 5th Framework Programme, has
been started on 01/12/2002. This project deals with the development
and characterisation of expanded cellular polymeric materials (smart
materials) with increased piezoelectricity (advanced sensors). Main
partners: TechImp s.r.l. Bologna, VTT(Technical Research Centre of Finland),
Dupont, Emfitech (Finlandia), Univ. Potsdam, Univ. Lienz.
3) ATRIDE (“Advanced
TRansmission systems: Innovation in HVDC cable and converter technologies”):
belonging to the 6th Framework Programme, waiting for financing (positively
evaluated, but not financed at the first stage for lack of founds, having,
however, good prospects for future financing). This project deals with
HVDC cables, but on the view side of the study of interconnecting problems
and power converters AC/DC and DC/AC used for high voltages (multilevel
converters). Main partners: National Grid (UK), Pirelli, Polish Power Grid,
Siemens, TechImp s.r.l. Bologna, Univ. Bologna-LIMAT, Univ. Leicester,
Univ. Tolosa, Univ. Zielona Gora (PL).
Past European Research
1) ARTEMIS (“Ageing
and Reliability TEsting and Monitoring of power cables: diagnosis for
Insulation Systems”): belonging to the 4th Framework Programme, started in
1998 and concluded in 2002. This project deals with aging, reliability
evaluation and diagnositics on HVAC cables (aging models, PEA, TEM, SEM,
partial discharges). Main partners: Alsthom, Pirelli, Borealis, EdF,
Electrabel, Univ. Bologna-LIMAT, Univ. Leicester, Univ. Tolosa, Univ.
Surrey, Univ. Montpellier.
Main National Research
1) P.R.I.N. (ex MPI
40%) MISTRAL (“Materiali Isolanti Innovativi a STRuttura Nanometrica per
Applicazioni nei Settori ELettrico ed Elettronico”): national and local
coordinator, Prof. Gian Carlo Montanari. It deals with composite
nanostructured materials with polymeric matrix showing improved properties
as electrical insulation for electrical and electronic applications.
Partners: Univ. Bologna-LIMAT, Univ. Palermo, Univ. Genova, Politecn.
2) P.R.I.N. (ex MPI
40%) “Gestione del rischio e della qualità nel mercato dell’energia
elettrica”: national coordinator, Prof. Alfredo Testa (Univ. Napoli 2),
local coordinator, Dr. Giovanni Mazzanti. Local research topic: “Aging of
components of power distribution network”: failure statistic analysis,
failure rate evaluation, reliability models of electric components).
Partners: Univ. Bologna-LIMAT, Univ. L’Aquila, Univ. Milano, Univ. Reggio
C., Univ. Napoli1, Univ. Napoli2, Univ. Palermo, Univ. Bari, Univ.
Cassino, Univ. Cosenza, Univ. Pavia.
3) Fondo Integrativo
Speciale per la Ricerca (FISR) 1999: “Studio dei meccanismi di
degradazione in materiali isolanti polimerici” (Investigation of
degradation mechanisms of polymeric insulating materials). Tematic area:
financed by industrial partners:
1) PIRELLI (insulating
materials: characterisation and modelling);
2) BOREALIS (insulating
3) CESI (diagnostics on
components of trasmission and distribution power networks).
NATO Project: Mobility of
researchers Italy /Est-Europe countries (Romania).